I agree 100%, but only about 15% of the people writing about this topic understand that. Only 1% know that if you count down from 40 to 29, it's actually the 12th second.
I really dont think the proposed rule is about eliminating the element of surprise. Sabans genious as a defensive mastermind is in his personnel packages for exotic defensive schemes predicated on down and distance situations. The up tempo offenses limit his ability to substitute on every play thus hamstringing his ability to implement the full compliment of his defensive strategies. This rule is not about player safety or limiting the element of surprise. It is entirely about Saban seeking a loophole in which he can find a way to substitute personnel on every play depending on the down and distance situation, period!
Whew! That's good to hear!
Somebody needs to get on the horn with this Gus Malzahn joker and set him straight. He had me worried!
''It's just a complete rule change,'' Malzahn said. ''It changes the dynamics of traditional football in a lot more ways than anyone would think. Not just if you get behind by a couple touchdowns and it's late in the game, you couldn't properly come back. But the way you coach your quarterbacks. Because it wouldn't just be 10 seconds."
It is a complete rule change but what do you think the underlying reason for the complete rule change is? If you think it is to eliminate the element of surprise or to abet player safety you've been taken in by the window dressing like so many others. I honestly don't think saban thought beyond his own desires insofar as the scenario in which a team is down 2 score with 7 minutes to go and not being able to play up tempo top get back in to the game. I do, however, honestly believe his entire motivation was completely self serving in an attempt to limit something that is very disruptive to his style of play defensively.
By eliminating the element of surprise snaps, it allows saben to rotate 5* every down if he wants to. Auburn may not snap it within the first 10 seconds, but you never know if they will. By keeping the surprise snap option, you are able to keep the defense from subbing fresh players in, for fear of getting flagged for too many men on field.